Came across this excellent article in today's Newsday by columnist Glenn Gamboa. Thought you might find it of interest:
Who needs record labels?
October 7, 2007
With people still processing the news of Radiohead's decision to release and sell its new album "In Rainbows" on its own, the question of whether record companies are still necessary is raised again.
It used to be a given that record companies were best at distribution and breaking in new acts. Well, the Internet continues to make previous distribution channels obsolete. And the ongoing shift to television (instead of radio) as the primary way to introduce new acts is making artists' management relationships with ad agencies and TV producers just as important as the long-running relationships between record companies and radio stations.
Look at two recent breakthroughs. Feist's sophomore album "The Reminder" (Cherry Tree) arrived in May with a great deal of blogger interest and media hype. But she couldn't land a hit until Apple picked up her "1, 2, 3, 4" as the theme for its campaign to launch its new line of iPods. All that repetition on the Apple commercials has generated sales, pushing Feist's single into the iTunes Top 10 and the Billboard Top 30, with little radio support.
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